Google Antitrust Suit

US Justice Department and 11 states have filed an antitrust lawsuit against Google, which BBC News notes is "the biggest challenge brought by US regulators against a major tech company in years." Here's word on this sudden recollection that there are regulations in this country to prevent monopolies:
The charges, filed in federal court, were brought by the US Department of Justice and 11 other states. The lawsuit focuses on the billions of dollars Google pays each year to ensure its search engine is installed as the default option on browsers and devices such as mobile phones.

Officials said those deals have helped secure Google's place as the "gatekeeper" to the internet, owning or controlling the channels for about 80% of search queries in the US.

"Google has thus foreclosed competition for internet search," the lawsuit said. "General search engine competitors are denied vital distribution, scale, and product recognition - ensuring they have no real chance to challenge Google."

It added: "Google is so dominant that 'Google' is not only a noun to identify the company and the Google search engine but also a verb that means to search the internet."

The case could be the first of many in the US that challenge the dominance of big tech firms and potentially lead to their break-up.

Coming just a few weeks before the US presidential election, it has also been viewed as a move by the Trump administration to prove its willingness to challenge the influence of the sector if it gains a second term.

Officials said they had not rushed the investigation to ensure it was filed before the election.

"We're acting when the facts and the law warranted," deputy attorney general Jeffrey Rosen said, adding that the department's review of competition practices in the technology sector is continuing.
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37.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 22, 2020, 20:05
37.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 22, 2020, 20:05
Oct 22, 2020, 20:05
 
Beamer wrote on Oct 21, 2020, 15:28:
jdreyer wrote on Oct 21, 2020, 15:27:
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 19:42:
HorrorScope wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 16:17:
Right and Amazon is the best at what they do. Bell Labs was once upon a time as well.
And Bell Labs' parent company was forced to break up... which in the long run was a good thing. It forced telecommunications competition which completely changed the long distance calling business -- mostly for the better.

The cost of calling overseas dropped from $3 per minute down to 10 cents. That's terrible! (For the telecoms).

Red?
You've gone to the dark side?

MUWAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Devil

Blue picked the color to further differentiate the mods. It was supposed to be maroon, but it looks pretty blood-red to me.
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36.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 21, 2020, 15:28
Beamer
 
36.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 21, 2020, 15:28
Oct 21, 2020, 15:28
 Beamer
 
jdreyer wrote on Oct 21, 2020, 15:27:
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 19:42:
HorrorScope wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 16:17:
Right and Amazon is the best at what they do. Bell Labs was once upon a time as well.
And Bell Labs' parent company was forced to break up... which in the long run was a good thing. It forced telecommunications competition which completely changed the long distance calling business -- mostly for the better.

The cost of calling overseas dropped from $3 per minute down to 10 cents. That's terrible! (For the telecoms).

Red?
You've gone to the dark side?
35.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 21, 2020, 15:27
35.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 21, 2020, 15:27
Oct 21, 2020, 15:27
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 19:42:
HorrorScope wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 16:17:
Right and Amazon is the best at what they do. Bell Labs was once upon a time as well.
And Bell Labs' parent company was forced to break up... which in the long run was a good thing. It forced telecommunications competition which completely changed the long distance calling business -- mostly for the better.

The cost of calling overseas dropped from $3 per minute down to 10 cents. That's terrible! (For the telecoms).
To prevent CV-19, avoid the Serious Seven: weddings, funerals, faith-based activities, bars, gyms, house gatherings and other small events.
Avatar 22024
34.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 21, 2020, 06:49
34.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 21, 2020, 06:49
Oct 21, 2020, 06:49
 
I am willing to bet this is nothing more than a mega shakedown. The morbidly obese orange make up guy was not happy with the "donations" or lack of, to his campaign from Google in the past, so this is simply a "friendly" message that this would all go away if they sent him some cash.
"Meet the new Boss, same as the old Boss." - The Who.
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33.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 21, 2020, 06:23
33.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 21, 2020, 06:23
Oct 21, 2020, 06:23
 
Beamer wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 16:17:
The big concern here is China.

What is worse for the American people? Having Google, Facebook, et al, be as big and obnoxious as they are, or having them be split up, and a Chinese competitor fill the void by not being split, therefore having all the economic power of the old entities and being able to squash the new entities?

Oh you mean how Google is now the biggest search in engine in China? Right....

If domestic companies are regulated domestically, why do you think that foreign companies would be excluded? I think it's pretty safe to assume that the rules would apply to everyone equally. (Google is heavily regulated in most of the world, despite being a US corporation)
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32.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 22:10
Cutter
 
32.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 22:10
Oct 20, 2020, 22:10
 Cutter
 
Saboth wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 21:11:
theglaze wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 17:28:
The decision to file the lawsuit just a few weeks before the US presidential election has raised questions about whether it was simply a move by the Trump administration to prove its willingness to challenge the influence of the sector if it gains a second term.

I also think it's a campaign maneuver.

Notice it's Trump's corrupt DoJ as well as Republican states in this lawsuit. This is simply "striking back" at "Big Tech" for refusing to help the GOP spread conspiracy theories, Russian propaganda, etc. It has nothing to do with monopolies or any such thing, but the fact that white supremacists, Nazis and other fringe elements that support the GOP, as well as Russian disinformation campaigns (which the GOP fully embraces) are being removed/blocked on search engines and social media networks. There's nothing wrong with breaking up monopolies, but this smacks of GOP partisan politics.

You're 100% correct. Yet, it doesn't make the threat to democracy any less likely. It really blows my mind that even a single generation or two ago most American right-wingers were staunchly opposed to communism and fascism, yet now proudly embrace it. America, as it is, simply can't last. Way past time to honestly start talking about secession. The right can have corn squeezins, incest, and Jesusland, whilst the Left moves boldly into a Trekian new future based on science and reason.
"Hot air hangs like a dead man, from a white oak tree. People sitting on porches, thinking how things used to be. It's a dark night...dark night."
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31.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 21:11
31.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 21:11
Oct 20, 2020, 21:11
 
theglaze wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 17:28:
The decision to file the lawsuit just a few weeks before the US presidential election has raised questions about whether it was simply a move by the Trump administration to prove its willingness to challenge the influence of the sector if it gains a second term.

I also think it's a campaign maneuver.

Notice it's Trump's corrupt DoJ as well as Republican states in this lawsuit. This is simply "striking back" at "Big Tech" for refusing to help the GOP spread conspiracy theories, Russian propaganda, etc. It has nothing to do with monopolies or any such thing, but the fact that white supremacists, Nazis and other fringe elements that support the GOP, as well as Russian disinformation campaigns (which the GOP fully embraces) are being removed/blocked on search engines and social media networks. There's nothing wrong with breaking up monopolies, but this smacks of GOP partisan politics.
30.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 20:55
30.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 20:55
Oct 20, 2020, 20:55
 
Mr. Tact wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 19:50:
jdreyer wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 17:46:
Next up:
- Amazon
- Apple
- Disney
- Facebook
- Comcast
- Microsoft (again)
- Probably mobile as well, now that Sprint and TMob are merging.
Of that list, I most want to see Comcast get hammered. In fact, ISPs in general need their chains yanked severely. More so in my mind than Google, Facebook or Apple. Yeah, the data collection by all of the big three is a terrible intrusion -- but at least it can be avoided somewhat if you care to try. You can't avoid your ISP, especially when there is a single broadband provider in your area.

The current DoJ likes the ISPs. All 11 attorneys general joining in the suit are Republicans. Right wingers are up in arms nowadays about Facebook and Twitter censoring their misleading or outright false posts, and generally dislike Silicon Valley's left-leaning techs. But what about ISPs? Surely if your ISP censors you it's even worse, right? Not so much. If you look back to Brett Kavanaugh opining about net neutrality in 2017, he was all for ISPs doing the exact same thing, claiming First Amendment rights:

Case link

The threshold question is whether the First Amendment applies to Internet service providers when they exercise editorial 427*427 discretion and choose what content to carry and not to carry. The answer is yes.

...

At the time of the Founding, the First Amendment protected (among other things) the editorial discretion of the many publishers, newspapers, and pamphleteers who produced and supplied written communications to the citizens of the United States. For example, the Federal Government could not tell newspapers that they had to publish letters or commentary from all citizens, or from citizens who had different viewpoints. The Federal Government could not compel book publishers to accept and promote all books on equal terms or to publish books from authors with different perspectives. As Benjamin Franklin once remarked, his newspaper "was not a stagecoach, with seats for everyone." Columbia Broadcasting System, 412 U.S. at 152, 93 S.Ct. 2080 (Douglas, J., concurring in judgment) (quoting FRANK LUTHER MOTT, AMERICAN JOURNALISM: A HISTORY, 1690-1960, at 55 (3d ed. 1962)).

...

Here, of course, we deal with Internet service providers, not cable television operators. But Internet service providers and cable operators perform the same kinds of functions in their respective networks. Just like cable operators, Internet service providers deliver content to consumers. Internet service providers may not necessarily generate much content of their own, but they may decide what content they will transmit, just as cable operators decide what content they will transmit. Deciding whether and how to transmit ESPN and deciding whether and how to transmit ESPN.com are not meaningfully different for First Amendment purposes.

Indeed, some of the same entities that provide cable television service — colloquially known as cable companies — provide Internet access over the very same wires. If those entities receive First Amendment protection when they transmit television stations and networks, they likewise receive First Amendment protection when they transmit Internet content. It would be entirely illogical to conclude otherwise. In short, Internet service providers enjoy First Amendment protection of their rights to speak and exercise editorial discretion, just as cable operators do.

...

Think about what the FCC is saying: Under the rule, you supposedly can exercise your editorial discretion to refuse to carry some Internet content. But if you choose to carry most or all Internet content, you cannot exercise your editorial discretion to favor some content over other content. What First Amendment case or principle supports that theory? Crickets.[8]

=====

jdreyer wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 18:04:
If we did break them up, I doubt we'd our domestic monopolies be replaced by a foreign one.
Right, because China certainly doesn't have any designs on the Internet or global media. That's a super safe assumption to start from.
29.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 19:50
29.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 19:50
Oct 20, 2020, 19:50
 
jdreyer wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 17:46:
Next up:
- Amazon
- Apple
- Disney
- Facebook
- Comcast
- Microsoft (again)
- Probably mobile as well, now that Sprint and TMob are merging.
Of that list, I most want to see Comcast get hammered. In fact, ISPs in general need their chains yanked severely. More so in my mind than Google, Facebook or Apple. Yeah, the data collection by all of the big three is a terrible intrusion -- but at least it can be avoided somewhat if you care to try. You can't avoid your ISP, especially when there is a single broadband provider in your area.
“Extinction is the rule. Survival is the exception.” -- Carl Sagan
28.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 19:44
Cutter
 
28.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 19:44
Oct 20, 2020, 19:44
 Cutter
 
The argument that regulation and even breakup of - virtual - monopolies is bad is ludicrous at best. The breakup of Ma Bell into RBOCs - regional Bell operating centers - in the 70s saw a huge surge in technological innovation, lower pricing, higher wages, etc. You can pretty much thank the DOJ for creating the Internet because we'd still be on rotary phones if Ma Bell was a monopoly. You don't need to break companies up anymore but you do need to regulate them. Especially in this age of consolidation of corporate power. It's so fucking stupid because we've already learned our lesson on this. But of course politicians looking for money are willing to fuck over the general public for a fast buck. Christ, just look at the difference in the FCC between Ashit Pai and Tom Wheeler.
"Hot air hangs like a dead man, from a white oak tree. People sitting on porches, thinking how things used to be. It's a dark night...dark night."
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27.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 19:42
27.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 19:42
Oct 20, 2020, 19:42
 
HorrorScope wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 16:17:
Right and Amazon is the best at what they do. Bell Labs was once upon a time as well.
And Bell Labs' parent company was forced to break up... which in the long run was a good thing. It forced telecommunications competition which completely changed the long distance calling business -- mostly for the better.
“Extinction is the rule. Survival is the exception.” -- Carl Sagan
26.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 18:04
26.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 18:04
Oct 20, 2020, 18:04
 
Beamer wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 16:17:
The big concern here is China.

What is worse for the American people? Having Google, Facebook, et al, be as big and obnoxious as they are, or having them be split up, and a Chinese competitor fill the void by not being split, therefore having all the economic power of the old entities and being able to squash the new entities?

Anti-trust regulation resolutions don't necessarily require companies to break apart. Strict regulation and heavy fines for breaking them are another solution.

If we did break them up, I doubt we'd our domestic monopolies be replaced by a foreign one.
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25.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 17:46
25.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 17:46
Oct 20, 2020, 17:46
 
Next up:
- Amazon
- Apple
- Disney
- Facebook
- Comcast
- Microsoft (again)
- Probably mobile as well, now that Sprint and TMob are merging.
To prevent CV-19, avoid the Serious Seven: weddings, funerals, faith-based activities, bars, gyms, house gatherings and other small events.
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24.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 17:28
24.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 17:28
Oct 20, 2020, 17:28
 
The decision to file the lawsuit just a few weeks before the US presidential election has raised questions about whether it was simply a move by the Trump administration to prove its willingness to challenge the influence of the sector if it gains a second term.

I also think it's a campaign maneuver.
23.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 17:23
23.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 17:23
Oct 20, 2020, 17:23
 
gommerstrike wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 12:19:
So then if a company does something that's so much better than everyone else, is that company then, in the crosshairs for just being better?

Fine. Yes Google did some anti-competitive things. But its search engine is better than everyone else's. Sounds more to me that the US is mad that AskJeeves, AltaVista, Yahoo, Bing, Lycos aren't being used anymore.

Intel's processors were so much better than everyone else's too. What happened? They sat on their laurels milking the Core architecture to the tune of 100s of billions for a decade with little innovation. AMD, almost forced out of business by Intel's monopoly position, finally had a breakthrough. Now Intel is hustling: Core i5 *finally* has six cores, for example. That is what competition does: it forces innovation and competitive prices.
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22.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 17:09
Beamer
 
22.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 17:09
Oct 20, 2020, 17:09
 Beamer
 
Got cutoff writing that.

Amazon is absolutely the best example of why no one can compete. Amazon's biggest competitor is Walmart, but Walmart can't truly compete. FOr one thing, Walmart is bogged down by corporate politics, and by hundreds of stores with huge rents and huge salaries.

Beyond that, though, Amazon is a tech company. Amazon has AWS, which is its most profitable business. AWS funds its retail, to a large extent. This gives Amazon the capability to lower prices dramatically and ensure no one can beat them. Amazon doesn't need a profit on any single item, or really any item, in its retail business, because of AWS. Walmart, meanwhile, does. It does badly.

Even from a marketplace perspective, it's hard to compete. Some stores, retailer or marketplace, have found niches Amazon can't really fit. But otherwise? If you're going to sell something, wouldn't you want it on Amazon, first and foremost, since it has far more daily users to tap into?

Google is kind of the same. If you start a new search engine, you need to figure out how to monetize it. If you don't want to run ads, or targeted ads, you're quite limited. Google, meanwhile, has so much data about us that it's running ads everywhere. Its search business exists for its ads, so it doesn't really need to make money serving you search results, because it serves you ads around it. They can invest those ad dollars into improvements in search, that someone without those dollars cannot.

They're just so far ahead. They have the most money. They're the only place consumers want to be. And they're who partners couldn't survive without prioritizing.
21.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 16:31
Beamer
 
21.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 16:31
Oct 20, 2020, 16:31
 Beamer
 
HorrorScope wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 16:17:
Solemn-Philosopher wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 13:13:
While I am all for government oversight on big businesses and potential abuses, I feel like Google is more popular because it is in fact one of the best search engines. I've tried others on many occasions and they just aren't as good at giving back decent results. If anything, I would prefer they look into their Youtube management. There seems to be more problems there.

Right and Amazon is the best at what they do. Bell Labs was once upon a time as well.

Yup. At some point, it is impossible for anyone to become better, because the incumbent can simply outspend them. This is particularly true in areas where there are enormous financial barriers to entry.

Other good, arguably better, search engines exist. They can't make a dent on Google because Google can outspend them, in every category, by thousands to 1. No amount of scrappiness can overcome that.
20.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 16:17
20.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 16:17
Oct 20, 2020, 16:17
 
Solemn-Philosopher wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 13:13:
While I am all for government oversight on big businesses and potential abuses, I feel like Google is more popular because it is in fact one of the best search engines. I've tried others on many occasions and they just aren't as good at giving back decent results. If anything, I would prefer they look into their Youtube management. There seems to be more problems there.

Right and Amazon is the best at what they do. Bell Labs was once upon a time as well.
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19.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 16:17
Beamer
 
19.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 16:17
Oct 20, 2020, 16:17
 Beamer
 
The big concern here is China.

What is worse for the American people? Having Google, Facebook, et al, be as big and obnoxious as they are, or having them be split up, and a Chinese competitor fill the void by not being split, therefore having all the economic power of the old entities and being able to squash the new entities?
18.
 
Re: Google Antitrust Suit
Oct 20, 2020, 16:16
Beamer
 
18.
Re: Google Antitrust Suit Oct 20, 2020, 16:16
Oct 20, 2020, 16:16
 Beamer
 
ColoradoHoudini wrote on Oct 20, 2020, 15:02:
I would like to see zero agenda in Google and FB. It's not good for anyone, regardless of political affiliation nor social stances.


I find that, usually, people claiming there's an agenda confuse having an agenda with adhering to the TOS.
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